Wednesday, February 20, 2013
The Fun of World-Building
I've been living, writing, and revising in the Land of Story for the past five years, and I love that world, I really do. But this new world? Can I just tell you how much I love it, too? I'm at the stage now where there are an overload of ideas, and I'm struggling with how to sort everything into some semblance of order. For now, this is my process:
Stage 1: I start with the scribbled spiral notebook pages that testify I grew up in the '80s when even if you had a PC you didn't use it except for your computer "homework". (Yes, indeed, that was my one and only venture into programming).
Stage 2: These notes translate to scattered post-its categorized by "Plot", "Setting", and "Character". Mostly, these are vague ideas: dormitories are in a tree, or something like that.
Stage 3: The final stage takes a better shape, where things are color-coded (hooray for an excuse to linger in the office-supply aisles!), each character has specific goals, plot points are solidified, and setting is developed. This is the closest I ever get to an outline, and typically all these pieces make it into the story, even if they're rearranged quite a bit by the end.
What about you? How do you organize your world-building? Do you have any tips on capturing inspiration? Or possibly you have a fabulous office supply you just can't live without? Do share!